According to the Palm Beach Post, the Dolphins will "almost certainly" use the franchise tag on CB Sean Smith if the sides can't agree on a long-term deal before free agency starts.
The Post, rather surprisingly, rules out fellow impending UFA Jake Long as a franchise candidate and lists Brian Hartline as the only other option for the tag in Miami. Hartline is a fine No. 2-caliber receiver, but there's no chance he'd be worth franchise-tag money. Smith, 25, has the measurables at 6-foot-3, 218 pounds and plays a position that every team covets. He's tied a career-high with 12 pass break-ups and two interceptions this season, always shadowing the opponent's top receiver.